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Friday, 22 December 2017

When several different things seem to come together ...

Archduke Piccolo's interest in and use of my HEXBLITZ rules has encouraged me take a fresh look at them and my later OPERATIONAL ART rules, and during my recent cruise I started putting a few idea design ideas down on paper. At the same time I was reading the first volume of Quintin Barry's THE FRANCO-PRUSSIAN WAR 1870-71 VOLUME 1. THE CAMPAIGN OF SEDAN. HELMUTH VON MOLTKE AND THE OVERTHROW OF THE SECOND EMPIRE (Published by in 2009 by Helion & Company Ltd) ...


... and just after Sue and I got back to the UK, it struck me that I really ought to give some thought to writing a set of operational-level rules for the mid to late nineteenth century.

At present the rules are very much a work-in-progress, but the design decisions I have made so far are:
  • A base will represent a regiment-sized unit or a Commander
  • Regiment-sized units will be organised into brigades, divisions, and possibly corps
  • Units will have a basic Combat Power based upon its level of training and/or equipment:
    • Poor quality Infantry & Cavalry = 1
    • Conscript quality Infantry & Cavalry = 2
    • Regular quality Infantry & Cavalry = 3
    • Elite Infantry = 4
    • Artillery = 3
    • Command = Varying with quality of the Commander (Range of Combat Power from 1 [Poor] to 4 [Exceptional])
  • A card activation system will be used
  • Artillery will fire first every turn as per my PORTABLE WARGAME rules ... but possibly subject to ammunition supply rules
  • Movement distances:
    • Artillery that has fired = No movement
    • Infantry that is going to fire = 1 hex
    • Infantry & Artillery not firing = 2 hexes
    • Cavalry & Commanders = 3 hexes
  • Weapon ranges are:
    • Infantry & Cavalry = Adjacent hex
    • Field Artillery = 4 hexes
  • Combat Resolution will be as per my OPERATIONAL ART rules (i.e. Both sides compare their D6 dice score + unit Combat Power + transient effects)
    • If the attacking unit’s Combat Power is lower than the defending unit’s Combat Power, the combat has been ineffective.
    • If the attacking unit’s and defending unit’s Combat Powers are equal, each unit throws a D6 and the unit with the lowest score stays in its current position and reduces its Combat Power by one.
    • If the defending unit’s Combat Power is less than the attacking unit’s Combat Power but more than half of the attacking unit’s Combat Power, the defending unit stays in its current position and reduces its Combat Power by one.
    • If the defending unit’s Combat Power is less than half of the attacking unit’s Combat Power, but more than a quarter of the attacking unit's Combat Power, the defending unit reduces its Combat Power by two.
    • If the defending unit’s Combat Power is less than a quarter of the attacking unit’s Combat Power, the defending unit reduces its Combat Power by two and withdraws until it is at least one hex away from an enemy unit.
  • Transient effects are:
    • The unit's Commander is in the same or an adjacent hex = Add the Commander's Combat Power
    • If the attacking unit is Artillery firing at an enemy unit in an adjacent hex = Add one
    • If the attacking unit is attacking an enemy unit in the flank or rear = Add three
    • If the attacking unit is attacking an enemy unit that is in defence works, inside a wood, or inside a built-up are = Subtract two
I hope to give these outline rules a try-out sometime soon, possible using figures from my 15mm-scale Peter Laing Austro-Prussian War collection. (I don't have any Franco-Prussian War figures, so I will have to make do with what I have available.)

Some of my 15mm-scale Peter Laing Austro-Prussian figures in action ...


... back in January 2009 when they stood in for the forces of Laurania and Maldacia!

12 comments:

  1. This all looks very interesting... I can feel myself being distracted by yet another project! - that's a great looking game from 2009 by the way.
    Compliments of the Season.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maudlin Jack Tar,

      The proof wil be in the play-test. I know that all the game mechanisms work, but dingy et know if they will work together.

      A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you!

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  2. I'm looking forward to seeing these rules in action. I have wanted to try a game at operational level and have been looking at Hexblitz, but I really don't wargame modern periods too often. I am also interested in seeing how supplies would factor into the game. I especially look forward to seeing your Peter Laing APW figures in action.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jhnptrqn,

      Sometime ago Arthur Harman suggested that I ought to try designing an a operational-level Napoleonic wargame to go alongside my projected PORTABLE NAPOLEONIC WARGAME ... and I am looking at these rules as a possible starting point for them.

      Limited artillery ammunition is something that I have been thinking about adding to my PW rules, and I want to see if doing so will be worthwhile. My reading of Quintin Barry's book certainly indicates that artillery units did sometimes run out of ammunition at crucial moments.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  3. Ah! This dove tails nicely into my 2018 plan to build Prussians to fight my French FPW. Always good to have alittle extra justification for a project. Looking forward to this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dan Foley,

      I've wanted to expand into the Franco-Prussian War for some time, and if this set of rules is reasonably successful, this might just justify me doing so as well.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  4. Replies
    1. Tradgardmastare,

      I hope that the end result lives up to expectations!

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  5. I'll be interested in trying this out - I have a large FPW collectiuon in 28mm. I currently use Neil THomas's 19th Century rules.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mike Lewis,

      I've written the scenario for the play-test, and hope to publish it tomorrow. I can then conduct the play-test as soon as I can ... hopefully before the New Year.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  6. We enjoy your blog here in Illinois
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=man5fLJbbRM&list=PLE6B93B647281D1C3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jubilo,

      Thanks for the somewhat different Christmas greeting!

      A Merry Christmas to you,

      Bob

      Delete